I like you... your friends, not so much

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    Sep 05, 2014 7:15 PM GMT
    I almost never start topics on here, but I'm pissy today and here is why:

    I have a good friend whom I have known for almost 20 years. Love him, love his wife, love their kid; they have been very kind to both my current and previous boyfriends and made room for him in their lives, including going to bat with their conservative family members.

    My issue is, lately more often than not when I (or we) get together with them, they invite other people too. I am normally fine with spontaneity and I like most of the people they have introduced us to (even hang out independently with a few of them).

    But there a few people/couples I can really do without. They are loud and opinionated and my friend -- knowing that we are not on the same page socially or politically -- seems to get some perverse thrill out of egging them on. It's fine in a big group because there other people to talk to, but today I was supposed to meet my friends at a restaurant and the wife waited til after I said yes to inform me that this other couple was also invited.

    Is there any diplomatic way to tell someone something like this? The sick part is -- despite having stated their opinion on same-gender marriage and other issues in front of us -- this couple is friendly to us (in their way) has had us to their house, etc. I know this is part of being a grown-up, but I was so annoyed about it today that I thought about cancelling.
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    Sep 05, 2014 7:51 PM GMT
    I'm a little confused on the last paragraph. Are your friends or their friends anti marriage equality?

    It's okay to throw an occasional party with people who don't normally get along (as long as they're not enemies--at which time you consider offering options) or who wouldn't normally simply socialize with each other without you there, but not on a continuing basis.

    The playing one person against the other is a whole other issue indicating a problem there. I would have to have that clarified before pursing the relationship any further, regardless of whothefuckelse they invite to dinner.
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    Sep 05, 2014 8:00 PM GMT
    theantijock saidI'm a little confused on the last paragraph. Are your friends or their friends anti marriage equality?

    It's okay to throw an occasional party with people who don't normally get along (as long as they're not enemies--at which time you consider offering options) or who wouldn't normally simply socialize with each other without you there, but not on a continuing basis.

    The playing one person against the other is a whole other issue indicating a problem there. I would have to have that clarified before pursing the relationship any further, regardless of whothefuckelse they invite to dinner.


    My friends are not (and in fact have credited getting to know us with shaping their views), but their friends are. They are Catholic and conservative politically, which is their business, I would just rather it didn't have to end up being the topic of every visit.

    My friends are mostly on the same side as I would be of these debates, were I to take part in them. So he is baiting these people as much to scrap with them himself as anything else; it is not focused on the gay issue, and in fact they are pretty good-natured about it; I am pretty sure they have the same conversation when I'm not there. It is just loud and awkward; I say very little and end up not really being able to enjoy the time with my friends.
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    Sep 05, 2014 9:07 PM GMT
    I'd think it completely appropriate to draw some lines in an understanding way. Throwing a party with a large variety of people is a different situation than an intimate dinner.

    It's a little tricky to navigate. Be careful not to have your friends think you are putting conditions on them but that you have conditions on your own self. If they want to associate with someone who would deny you your civil rights, that's their business, but that doesn't mean you have to associate with those people besides bumping into them at the mall or at a party.

    And some of that all depends upon distances and offenses. If someone I'm friends with wanted to befriend my betraying xcousin, that would likely end our friendship. But if someone was friends with the betrayer's parent or sibling, that includes some distance to make the situation tolerable.

    I've friends who wouldn't vote against their Republican party line even if that means I don't get my civil rights. But they'd not say or champion me not getting my civil rights. They believe I should be able to marry as they are, but they hold stronger to their party than to my plight. Were they against me having the right to marry, I'd tell them to fuck off.

    The last time at dinner with other religious friends when they all decided to offer grace before eating, saying grace with me, a non religious Jewish gay man at the table, are you fucking kidding me? Everyone said what they were thankful for and I was last to speak, thanking God for penis. Let's eat! Everything looks delicious!

    Be aware that a contest could develop between you and their other friends, regardless of how you play it. People tend to judge each other based upon their perceptions of how people they enjoy judge others. And give no credit to your 20 years with them. People say anything while it's convenient. That doesn't mean shit once they change their minds.
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    Sep 05, 2014 10:31 PM GMT
    theantijock said

    ...The last time at dinner with other religious friends when they all decided to offer grace before eating, saying grace with me, a non religious Jewish gay man at the table, are you fucking kidding me? Everyone said what they were thankful for and I was last to speak, thanking God for penis. Let's eat! Everything looks delicious!...




    couldn't resist...
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    Sep 06, 2014 1:55 PM GMT
    Survived the night... they behaved themselves... mostly. Interestingly the "perps" actually said they didn't want to get into politics, which thankfully our mutual friend respected. He found other stuff to get them going.